Thursday, March 22, 2012

"Going up and down"

I like how Gambians talk about traveling or being busy.  Instead of saying you have traveled or went out they say ‘you have been going up and down’. And as I mentioned back in January we got to do some traveling.  We went to Dakar, Senegal for the West Africa International Softball Tournament (WAIST) and then flew to Tanzania to meet my parents for a safari.  Both Dakar and Tanzania were great, and all our travels went smooth.  WAIST was a lot of fun and felt like we were in America.  We hung out with lots of other Americans, ate fajitas, cheese, ice cream, nachos, hot dogs, played softball, went to a mall, and to an island with a nice beach.  I realize this list of food may not impress most people reading this, but to volunteers, it is what we dream of.  Dakar is West Africa’s biggest city and it has a lot of good restaurants, venues, and beaches.  We are excited to go back someday.

Tanzania was also fun and cold, which we really enjoyed.  We stayed in Dar El Salam for our first 2 days and enjoyed walking around the city, going to the Indian Ocean, and eating delicious street food.   The food was a lot of Indian food with different spices and curry than we are used to here in West Africa.  It was delicious and fun for us just to walk around and look at everything that is so completely different from Banjul.   From there we took a bus to Arusha where we met up with my parents.  From Arusha we took a 10 day safari! We took lots of pictures, and saw lots of animals!  It is definitely something anyone can and should do!  Our favorite thing was seeing the lioness with her cubs. 
Indian Ocean

Guided tour

one of our 'tented' lodges

top of the crater

Lion cubs!

Our ride

Maasi women

When we returned from Tanzania, my parents came back to Gambia with us and visited the Gambia coast and our village.  The village really enjoyed seeing my parents visit and ask us about them; likewise, my parents really enjoyed seeing our village and listening to us speak mandinka.  Right after my parents left, Ben flew to Georgia for Andrew and Sarah’s wedding.  Ben had a great time with the Turner family and came back with funny stories and lots of food from America!

1 comment:

  1. I love this! And I love that you guys (as opposed to any other guys) got to do it.